Story of Wataneya
It starts with Mrs. Azza Abdel Hamid a kind lady who used to visit orphanages on a regular basis out of the goodness of her heart, and in seeking Jannah (heaven), bringing joy to children’s precious hearts with every visit, and soon became a particular favorite of them. Having formed a special bond with a two-year-old boy named Karim, Mrs. Azza became his sponsor (Kafil), providing both emotional and financial support until life took its toll on her. Though her visits stopped, she continued to support Karim financially.
Fast forward a few years as she sat alone late at night, she heard the doorbell ring. She opened the door and there stood a gentleman, pleading for her to let him in. He spoke to her as though he was a familiar face… “Mama Azza, it’s me, Karim, please let me in. I ran away from the orphanage” he said.
She traced her memories trying to remember him, and to her astonishment, he was Karim, the boy she cared for, the beautiful boy she once knew.
Though she remembered him, she felt torn, and despite her love for him, she knew she couldn’t let him in. She told him “Karim, my dear, you shouldn’t be running away, go back home and we’ll speak tomorrow.”
It was one of the most difficult nights of her life, and her mind filled with wonder.
She wondered how she could have helped him… if she was supposed to let him in. She wondered what would make him run away. What would make someone run away? From what she could remember, Karim was living comfortably. But it seems that wasn’t enough.
She tried to pinpoint what was missing. She tried to figure out the void she could fill. She wondered what she could do to protect him and others alike, to prevent something like this from happening again. She wondered what she could do to ensure a promising future for them, once they leave their care homes and venture into the real world.
Establish a care home, she thought. Maybe then she could raise 20 kids, 50 kids, 100 kids. She wondered if that would be enough. She wondered about the rest. How could she help the rest? A voice in her head challenged her, insisting that there must be more that she could do. It is this wonder that paved the way for sustainable change.
And so, Wataneya Society was born. Established in collaboration with 10 philanthropic businessmen, with the aim of creating a future of equal opportunities for children and youth without parental care. An NGO that would become a haven for the cause of orphans and a pioneer in the field of alternative care. Values: